Heroes of CKI

April Yoshihara







Animal Science

Garden Grove, CA

Half Japanese, Half Mexican


Why did you join Circle K?

I did Key Club in high school, and then I didn’t know if I wanted to do it in college, but then I heard they had the big/little program, and like, I did want a big, but I didn’t want to join like, a sorority or fraternity, and because I was already familiar with how Circle K is like community service, and I do like doing community service, so I was like okay, this will work, this is fine.

Why did you want to be family head?

I think it’s fun meeting new people, and I do like talking and getting to know people, so I figured it’d be a good position for me. Um, and like... I don’t know, it’s just fun. Like, when I did read all the positions, that was one that I thought would be fun to do. I don’t think anyone necessarily influenced me to want to pursue a board position or anything like that. Um, but everyone in my-- like my big, my grandbig, my great-grandbig have all been family heads, so they’re like, “You can continue the thing!” and I was like “Ah!” Yeah, but that’s not why I wanted to do it.

Did you have a Circle K moment?

Um, not really, I did really enjoy the Out of Darkness Walk, which was about suicide prevention, and it was a really interesting event. We had to hold posters of like, families’ loved ones and stuff, and then this one family came up, and they were like, “Thank you,” and then the mom’s like, “That was my daughter,” and then it got very emotional, and then they took a picture of us with the signs. And so that was really cool because you could see the impact of just, something so simple as holding a sign and like, being there for people as they’re doing this walk, and like impact them and they can appreciate it.

You’re an animal science major, right? What do you hope to do with it?

I want to be a veterinarian. I’m still trying to decide if I want to be small animal--so like companions, dogs, cats, all that good stuff--or exotic, which is like zoo animals, but I know if I were to do zoo animals it is more competitive because it’s not as much high in demand. Um, and technically large animal is in high in demand, like, need for vets, but I don’t think I wanna work with large animals, so like cows and pigs and sheep and that sort. I mean they’re cool, like I do a lot of hands-on work with them in class, like for classes, but i don’t think I’d want to do that as a career. I think it’d be really cool to do exotic-- like ideal goal is to work with baby wildlife, and like help foster their growth and stuff and monitor that, but I don’t know what that technically encompasses, or like, if it’s still considered like a vet’s job to be doing that. Or like, I guess it’s not necessarily a zookeeper either, but I wouldn’t wanna choose to be a zookeeper because you don’t need to take vet school for that, I don’t think.

So you want to be able to help raise animals?

Yeah! Well, for like, the wildlife ones, and like monitor their care and stuff. But I mean even just working with dogs and cats is cool too, like I’ve volunteered for my animal clinic and it was pretty interesting, ‘cause I got to see different surgeries and stuff. I saw a dog get spayed. And then a tumor coming off of like, a dog’s foot or whatever. Yeah. Um, I also watched a dog get euthanized because it had maggots growing out of it. Yeah… that’s like the not-fun part. But I mean like it wasn’t… too bad, like I didn’t get like emotional or anything, so I know that if I do want to be a vet it’s not gonna be like, oh my gosh. Like I could handle it and I’d know how to separate work from like, personal feelings, I guess. Like in my Animal Science 2 class, we also had to go to a meat lab and watch a slaughtering of a pig and a cow, and like, I was okay, like I watched it and it was pretty interesting, but it didn’t really like affect me like, “Oh I don’t want to eat meat now,” but it’s like, you get to learn where your meat comes from if you eat it, you know. So that was cool. But, I know like Yuna, she said she like watched it and she was like, “Oh my gosh, I can’t.” But yeah, I was like, “Hm, kinda interesting.” And then I took the ANS49G, which is like an internship at the meat lab but it’s a class, so you just help out with whatever they needed. When I took the class, I was mostly just in the cooler helping them cut meat and package it and stuff, but then last winter I actually interned there, and so the different-- because they have like kill days, usually on like Tuesdays and Wednesdays, and so, when i went, I got to like-- every week was like, you see that happen, and then we helped trim off dirt and hair and stuff from the carcasses and stuff, and so like.. It-- it doesn’t make me queasy. It’s just like an interesting experience, yeah. It’s pretty cool. And like, you get to help out and you get to see the whole process. And it’s humane, like they render the animal unconscious before they bleed it out, so it’s not like the animal’s stressed or in pain or anything like that either.

What else do you do outside of Circle K?

I was part of Picnic Day board, and i was part of the animal events team. I did it last year and this year-- or like, Picnic Day in general and then specifically Animal Events. Um, and so like, well, this year I was trying to decide between animal events and children’s discovery fair, so it’s like doing crafts for the children, but the director for animal events was the same as last year, and like, because it was gonna be her last year I kinda wanted to do that, and also I didn’t think I would have the time to do children’s discovery fair because they did have a lot more to do during fall. Like we didn’t have too much to do. And so we’re in charge of all the live animal events that happen on the day of Picnic Day, and uh, plan out who and what is gonna be on Hutchison Field and like the canine dog demonstration on Russell Field, and so I helped with the layout for that and contacting them, like, sending emails and stuff, and like trying to get new groups to come out for Picnic Day. Um, and then we have to be at the MU at 5 am on the day of Picnic Day, and it doesn’t technically end until-- after clean-up and all that, we’re probably not done until like 6PM. I was up for 21 hours on Picnic Day. Because after that, I went home for a little bit, and then I went to go watch DDR, and then after that ended, my parents were talking to Elisa’s mom for a while, and then after taking home George, and then just like, showering and getting ready and all that, by then it was like 1AM, so I was up for like 21 hours. Then I had to come to clean up on Sunday. Soooo I had to be up by like, 8:30. Yeah, it was a loooong weekend. But it’s really fun. And like, you get to meet people that you normally wouldn’t have met, because they’re not gonna be in your classes necessarily. Everyone’s from different backgrounds because they’re coming from-- they want to be part of like different teams, so it’s like tech team, or like, entertainment, special events, volunteer, yeah. And so it’s pretty cool.

How would you say the Picnic Day experience in general, being on board, how was that for you?

It’s pretty fun. Like, I like planning events and being part of that. In high school I was part of ASB, so I got that experience of event planning and stuff. And so like, this is I guess a bigger scale because there is over 70,000 people that attend Picnic Day each year, so that’s kinda cool, but it’s also hard, like day of, because you kinda wanna go enjoy things, but our break was only like three hours, so you can’t do too much. It depends on your team, but like, each member of our team got a three hour break. But yeah. Even just walking somewhere can take like 15 minutes because also there’s just so many people. But yeah, it’s fun.

Okay, switching gears. What is one of your favorite things about yourself?

About myself…? Um… *laughs* I’d like to say I can be pretty friendly. Um, and then, usually, like, say if I’m in a group setting, depending on the setting, sometimes I’ll be I guess more quiet, but usually if everyone else is quiet then I’ll be the one that’s talking to try to like, get everyone to interact and at least make it more fun. Um, and like sometimes I joke around, like “I hate people,” but I really don’t. Just sometimes people are annoying. *laughs* And so, I guess like, my friendliness. And like… trying to talk to new people, or people who are more shy, like I’ll try to approach them and just try to find something that they can relate to, to get them to open up, I guess.

How would you say you balance Circle K and school and all the other stuff you already do right now?

Um, I use a Google calendar, so to plan out my days, so I know when I am busy and when I’m not busy. I do want to go out to more service events, which I would technically have more time on weekends, but like, I don’t know, I just, sometimes I don’t like waking up too early, cause the weekend’s the only time I actually get to sleep in. I have 9 AMs every day-- well, no, 9 AMs three times a week, an 8 AM one day and I have class at 11 on another day, but it’s just like, because I have work and then we have our meetings and stuff, and like classes, there’s not like too much downtime, so it’s just like utilizing all my gaps to do my homework and stuff so that way when I get home later, I can just like eat and focus on whatever other stuff I need to do, and not feel as like stressed out. Stressed out about all the stuff I need to do. Yeah like, homework, deadlines and stuff. But, I feel like-- cause in high school I was involved in a lot of clubs, and I did a sport, and I did ASB, and so… I got used to I guess being busy…? Yeah, I dunno, you kinda get used to it. But like, it’s not too bad, I guess. So I think it’s better for me if I am busy ‘cause then it forces me to be productive during my time. But sometimes it is hard when you have like, three midterms in one week. Like I had three midterms last week, after Picnic Day, so there was no time to really study the weekend before them ahead of time. And so that was kind of rough, but I was like, “Ehh, it’s fine, I’ll figure it out!”

What is something that you wish you could improve about yourself?

Studying ahead of time. *laughs* Like, I study, and sometimes it’s like a few days before, but you know some people start studying like a week before the test, I’m like “how do you…? Wow, goals.” And, I don’t know, sometimes even when I’m studying, I feel like I still don’t know what the best way for me to study is. Even though it’s like, okay you’ve been doing this how many years now, studying, but I still don’t know what’s the best way. And like, even sometimes it depends on the class. In terms of like, how you take notes for that class, or if it’s more of a, you need to know the concepts and then be able to apply the concepts type of thing, so it’s also harder to process than if it’s just straight memorization, like whatever.

Is there something you wish more people knew about you?

Oh my gosh that’s such a hard question. But it’s a good question, it’s a hard question. I don’t know, I feel like-- you know how we played Hot Seat at board retreat? So like I think I thought about that. I was like, “If I got asked that question, what would I want to say?” Um…… I don’t know! *laughs* I guess like, I am a pretty independent person, but sometimes I’m not-- like I do like the company of my friends and stuff. And then I really like hugs. So I feel like… I feel-- I don’t know, I hug some people, but I don’t know if people know that I like hugs? And so like, if people want a hug, I’ll give you a hug. So, I guess-- hm… I don’t know. I like to think I’m a pretty open person, I guess. So like if people ever need someone to talk to about anything, I’m always there to listen, or if they need advice or whatever. But also just like, I like learning about people, so like, if they want to make a new friend, I’m always down to talk and hang out and stuff. Even if I don’t know you. But sometimes it’s like-- or you know, like, it’s hard, sometimes when you’re like, “I wanna get to know you,” but you can’t just be like, “Hey.” Or you don’t know how to start the conversation to where to keep the conversation going, to where it’s actually-- not just like, “Oh, what are you taking? What is your major?” Like very basic stuff. I wanna know like, their interests, I guess. But yeah. And sometimes it is easier to talk to some people than others, where the conversation, it just flows, you know. But other times it’s very like, “question, answer, silence.” *laughs* And then you’re like, “What do I ask now?” And sometimes you don’t know if the question you ask is something they wouldn’t want to talk about, I guess, or like, if it would be triggering of some sorts, or-- not triggering, but they just wouldn't want to open up about that, which is also fine, but you don't want to like offend them by asking something. Yeah.

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